Monday, August 27, 2007


“I find it interesting that all four stories that were submitted are about spiritual crisis.”

The past couple of months have been a reflective time for me. So much has changed in respect to my personal circumstances, my priorities, my future, and even my definition of myself. I wrote in my journal the other day and looked at things I had written as long as five years ago. It’s interesting to think of the blank pages in that book, of what I have yet to write in it. Strange to think that even though I don’t know what’s coming next, I’m already headed toward it.

Then, as I was driving home from the writers group meeting last night, I saw a shooting star. I can’t remember the last time I saw one when I was alone, and this one felt somehow like it was just for me. A wish only I got to make. It’s a bad idea to pass up the opportunity for a wish, so I tried to think of one.

What did I want? I want plenty of things, but what was worth wishing on a shooting star for? I started trying out wishes like I was shopping for a shirt. Something with the right color, cut, fabric. Something that felt right. A wish for money? Success with selling my jewelry? Success in writing? A clear answer to the MFA/Ph.D question? Nothing quite fit.

My mind went to events over the past couple of weeks, and conversations about crises, stories, how things begin. I thought about challenges, potential, being afraid, and about making something out of nothing. Of how last week I decided that my next challenge for everyone is going to be about fear, and how sometimes the best thing that can happen to us is rejection or failure.

Over the course of many years, many letters, and a decent number of our respective rough patches, the one thing Camii and I always remind each other is to have faith. While neither of us are religious, we do hold to the belief that as long as you’re looking for it, something positive will come out of anything, even the worst situations. She’s told me more than once that, “I know it’s tough and you’re hurting, and that you might not be able to see it now, but know that this will turn out for the best. With time, you’ll see how this hardship was a good thing.”

It took me a few miles, but I finally found my moment of clarity. It all came together, and I knew what I had to wish for. What it is that's more important to me than anything else. I wished for possibilities.


-John said...

A wise thing to wish for. Make sure that you keep your eyes open for those possibilities when they come your way. I can say with a hundred percent sincerity from experience that nothing is worse than realizing a possibility when it's already too late. Catch as many as you can.

Whittaker Luckless said...

Big butterfly net.

Mishell said...

Shooting stars are to never be lightly wished upon, especially the ones sent just for you.

I see many possibilities in your future, Ali, and I think they would have appeared for you whether you wished on the star or not. Like John says, though, make sure you keep your eyes open for them, for they are always fleeting and usually fickle. Like opportunities, if you don't recognize them for what they are, they are as useless to you as are tonsils and appendixes.

Ali said...

Thanks for the good wishes guys. I'll go start looking for my net.